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Paranoid in Poland

How Worried Should the West be About the Law and Justice Party's Victory?

A couple sit behind a polling booth a polling station in Przecieszyn, Poland October 25, 2015. Kacper Pempel / Reuters

The Law and Justice (PiS) party’s stunning victory in Poland’s October 25 parliamentary elections has left analysts wondering just how worried they should be. PiS won an absolute majority in the Poland’s lower house of parliament, the Sejm—the first time any party has done so since 1989. Since PiS also controls the presidency (party candidate Andrzej Duda was elected in August), it has a unique opportunity to conduct a legislative revolution in Poland.

After what happened in Hungary, where a similar right-wing populist party won a super-majority and changed the constitution in ways that diminished democracy, entrenched the ruling party’s power, and enervated the IMF and foreign banks, many think something similar is possible in Poland. Indeed, there are several things to worry about.

Foremost among them is the worldview of the PiS leader, Jaroslaw Kaczynski. His noted suspicion of both Moscow and Brussels and track record

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